An open letter to the President & U.S. Congress


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After the recent, credible reports on Israel's systematic use of rape, torture and the executions of entire families during the current, ongoing siege of Al-Shifa Hospital, I thought I had seen the worst. Then, I saw the news report detailing Hadeel al-Dahdouh's survival after being tortured, buried alive, and subjected to genetic testing along with her children. On 12/6/23 Hadeel and her entire family were abducted. They were separated by gender. Hadeel, her 4 year old toddler, and infant were taken to a warehouse. She was then handcuffed, blindfolded and taken to a house Israeli forces had commandeered nearby. She was forced to remain in a kneeling stress position for days while she was beaten. Eventually, Hadeel and other hostages were taken into a makeshift operating room. They were injected with drugs to force unconsciousness. Israelis took tissue samples from her back for DNA analysis while she was still conscious. Hadeel was told that Israeli forces did not believe her children were hers because they had light hair and eyes. Hadeel cried out in pain during this barbaric act. Soldiers tightened her blindfold so tightly she bled from her eyes. After this, she was taken away, beaten, and refused access to her children. Several days later, she and other hostages were put inside a large pit outside. A bulldozer was nearby - Israeli forces said it would be used to bury them alive. Israeli forces removed her hijab and laughed while she cried. Dirt was dumped on the hostages. One of the male hostages was singled out, ordered to confess to involvement in 10/7 or everyone would be murdered. Her husband was taken and placed with his head under the tank. She did not know at the time if her husband had been murdered - the hostages were separated and moved again. Hadeel was taken to Antut Prison - one of Israel's many concentration death camps - for 9 days and tortured. They took her to Beersheba where ID cards were made. Hadeel was in dire need of medical attention - the incisions from her caesarean had not fully healed and after the repeated beatings it became infected. Israeli forces prodded the wound, laughed, and did nothing to get her medical care. The final part of Hadeel's nightmare ended in another concentration death camp - the Damon Prison. She was strip-searched multiple times, humiliated, tortured, and interrogated. She was released 1/26, along with her husband, and was taken to the Kuwaiti Hospital in Rafah. She still cannot feel her hands after months of being bound. Tell me how this is Israel defending itself. Explain to me why my tax dollars were used for the funding of Hadeel's nightmare. I want to know how you can justify this. You have a moral and legal obligation to prevent and stop genocide. I demand you fulfill these obligations now. There must be an immediate, permanent ceasefire, the release of all Palestinian and Israeli hostages, and unrestricted humanitarian aid into Gaza.

▶ Created on March 26 by Sarah

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